Agile Gets Physical: Slice-Based Integration

Are you struggling to integrate the results of your agile software development into a hardware project? Frustrated by waiting weeks to receive test results, or delivering code only to find the hardware it will run isn't ready yet? Do you feel like your hardware partners just don't understand what you're doing?

This paper explores applying agile ideas to a field which isn't entirely agile. We'll show how to use the 'integration by slice' method to bring together and test the results of hardware and software development incrementally, planning in a fashion that serves the differing demands of both disciplines.

In this presentation, you will learn:

  • why hardware and software integration plans often conflict with each other

  • how to better coordinate firmware development, software app development, hardware development, and system testing by using slices through your system

  • how to plan slices which deliver feedback to your development partners earlier and improve communication between all the teams

  • some principles for testing emergent behavior in stages

  • why this method is consistent with agile development even though it looks different

Kathy Iberle 

Kathy Iberle has been working in Lean and Agile product development for over twenty years, using cutting-edge methods to help strengthen development and make mixed hardware/software projects run more smoothly. Much of Kathy’s career was spent at Hewlett-Packard, working on a range of products from printers and electronic instruments to medical applications and website apps.

She’s worked in a variety of roles from developer to quality assurance expert to agile adoption leader. Since 2012, Kathy has been running her own consulting firm to help companies strengthen and accelerate their product development.